Global Agenda Council on Design & Innovation 2012-2013
The world needs creative solutions to overcome the current set of crises, from climate change to fragile states and youth unrest. Today’s complex environment requires that we constantly readjust our mindsets to tackle its dynamic forces. In this context, design and innovation are drivers for humanity’s creative and sustainable future.
Design and innovation can serve several functions. First, they are a universal language that communicates different values. This is important for balancing the perspectives and goals of multiple stakeholders. Second, they act as systems of collaboration that encourage inclusive, accessible, multifunctional and sustainable ways of thinking. This is crucial to address the global problems of tomorrow. Finally, design and innovation are naturally democratic mediums: they are able to preserve cultural principles yet can embrace new ideas and new systems, while iterative processes automatically incorporate checks and balances.
Design and innovation can transform the transmission and dissemination of information. With the world increasingly communicating through social media, including YouTube, Flickr, Instagram and Facebook, information has become visual, and visual design will become a universal language of the digital age. The increasingly visual nature of our interactions will have implications for education, and for our economies, religion and technology. Looking to the future, the question to ask is how design and innovation can best help to create an equitable value system within our global society.
- In China today, 1 million students are studying design.
- A Danish study shows that companies using design as an integral part of their business and their innovation and development processes saw a 22% increase in value, compared to companies that only use design for last styling and finish.
“Designers stand between revolutions and everyday life. They are able to grasp momentous changes in technology, science and society and convert those changes into objects and ideas that people can understand.”
Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, Museum of Modern Art, New York
“There are a multitude of challenges that design thinking can and must address, the biggest of which is the fact that design has become the mercenary of consumer culture.”
Jens Martin Skibsted, Founding Partner, KiBiSi/Skibsted Ideation
"To innovate faster, better, cheaper, Western firms must embrace a new mindset: a frugal and flexible mindset that sees opportunity in adversity and enables you to do more with less."
Navi Radjou, Executive Director, Centre for India & Global Business, Judge Business School, University of Cambridge
20-22 January 2013
Design Indaba Conference
24 February-1 March 2013
Cape Town, South Africa
Salone Internazionale del Mobile
9-14 April 2013
World Innovation Forum
12-13 June 2013
New York, USA
The Council on Design Innovation strives to apply design and innovation to identify and analyse systemic problems, and to invent and deliver creative solutions. During the five years of its existence, the Council has developed principles for design to become a capacity-building tool as well as a provider of concrete solutions to global issues. For example, in response to the need for drinking water in environmentally-challenged and underserved communities, the Council developed a water bottle filtering system.
In the upcoming term, the Council plans to organize four roundtables open to the public. Each roundtable will focus on a different topic and will be hosted by Council Members in countries around the world. The nature of the outcome is yet to be determined; however, to ensure the visibility of the outcomes, social media will be employed prior to, during and after the events. The Council plans to connect with the Forum teams and other Councils related to each of the selected topics and regions to create interlinkages across issues.
The four draft topics for the roundtables are:
- Policies and strategies: How can design and innovation policies and strategies be implemented to boost national competitiveness and stimulate sustainable economic growth?
- Education: How is design and innovation reshaping education to develop the skills and talent that meet the needs of the 21st century?
- Urban development: With rapid urban development, what role can design and innovation play in shaping smart and sustainable cities for the future?
- Embracing complexity: In today's hyperconnected world, mastering complex systems is critical for decision-making and building resilient organizations. What role can design and innovation play?